I started reading The Gifts of Imperfection once before, but I didn’t get very far. It just wasn’t the right time I guess.
Normally when I read, I read for fun, for entertainment. That is not a book you can read lightly. But time and again, when questioned deeply about what’s going on, the thing that keeps coming out of my mouth is, “I’m not good enough.”
Not good enough for what?
Not good enough to have the life other people have. Not good enough to make money but have more free time. Not good enough to decorate my house. Not good enough to look put-together.
I don’t go through my days saying these things to myself, they’re just there in the background. They’re unconscious thoughts. But what I’m learning about unconscious thoughts is that they’re pervasive. You have to shine light on them, bring them up to the surface, to be able to change them.
I’m trying to notice when these thoughts come up. When jealousy comes up. When I look at someone else and wish I could be more like them.
I’m interested to see what Brene Brown has in store for me in her gifts of imperfections: compassion, courage and connection. The premise of her book is that she can show me how to incorporate those into my daily life. I need to practice them daily.
It’s like some “homework” I was recently given. I was told to let my husband do the laundry for a month, with the goal being that I realize and understand that whether or not I do the laundry doesn’t change whether or not I’m worthy. It doesn’t change my value as a person. I’m not less of a wife or mom if I don’t do the laundry.
I’d love to say this is something everyone should try, and maybe you should, but in my case it was because it was one of those tasks I didn’t want to give up because I felt like it was mine.
I wasn’t letting my husband help me because then I didn’t feel like I was doing my job.
It’s the middle of the month. My husband is fine doing the laundry though he told me he wished I would have asked him instead of telling him. He is of course right about that.
While it’s the middle of that journey, I was going to say it’s the beginning of the bigger journey, but that’s not true. This journey has been a long time in the making. There were a lot of events that led me here and I can see the influences of some of the other ones even in the way I write.
I just finished Dani Shapiro’s Hourglass: Time, Memory, Marriage and I can tell that the way she talked about time and the journey that is life is influencing me today.
I’m thinking of my mom and wondering what she will think when (if) she reads this. If it were one of my girls reading it, it would make me sad and proud. One of the things I wish for most is that they see themselves the way I see them: beautiful always because of who they are.
But I also know what a struggle that can be. And as Brene says, I have to love myself first.
As always, I have to lead by example.
I’m ready to see where this journey will take me.
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